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Details

  • Type
    Individual - Modern
  • Nationality and Dates
    French, 1889–1961
  • Remarks
    Chanoine; L'Abbe Drioton; Egyptologist; Inspector General; Director General. Nationality and life dates from Who was Who in Egyptology. (1889-1961) French Egyptologist ; born at Nancy, 21 Nov. 1889, son of Etienne D. and Félicie Maria Moitrier; he was educated at the Ecole Saint-Sigisbert, and in 1905 went on to the Séminaire at Nancy to be trained as a priest; he later became a Canon of the Church; he went to Rome in 1912, becoming a Doctor of Philosophy at the St. Thomas Academy and in 1913 received a Doctorate in Theology at the Gregorian University; at this period he was mainly interested in Hebrew and Bible studies; he became a Lic. in Biblical Sciences of the pontifical Commission; his interest now turned to Oriental studies and in 1918 he gained the Diploma of the Ecole Libre des Langues orientales at the Catholic Institute of Paris, taking Egyptian and Coptic as his subjects; he had been interested in ancient Egypt from the age of eleven and he took Egyptian grammar lessons by correspondence with Bénédite (q.v.); in 1919 he was appointed Professor of Egyptian philology and Coptic language at the Catholic Institute in succession to Virey (q.v.); for his students he now produced a handy Cours de Grammaire égyptienne, a work praised by F. Ll. Griffith (q.v.) in JEA, and the first teaching grammar other than translations of Erman's Aeg. Grammatik that had been written in France for many years; Drioton worked as Assistant Keeper with Boreux (q.v.) at the Louvre from 1926, and from 1925 he undertook the epigraphic survey at the Medamud excavations of the Institut Francais directed by Bisson de la Roque (q.v.), publishing afterwards two volumes of inscriptions; he now showed his interest in the reading of Ptolemaic texts; he also at this period worked on cryptographic writings and published several articles on this subject which were to become classics; in 1936 he was appointed Director of the Egyptian Antiquities Service succeeding Lacau (q.v.), and filled this position for sixteen years; this was also an immensely productive period of his life as he published scores of articles and reviews; he also found time to give courses at the Institute of Egyptology of the University of Cairo and helped to train many young Egyptians in Egyptology ; he was appointed Director, 1952, at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and Professor at the Collège de France, 1957; he gained many awards and decorations from different countries including Egypt and Iran, and was an Officer of the Légion d'Honneur; his specialities were religious subjects, Egyptian monotheism, and maxims and morals written on scarabs; "Essai sur la cryptographie privée de la fin de la XVIII dynastie" (1933) and "Recueil de cryptographie monumentale" (1940) were among his most important works in this field, exhibiting notable insight. Ancient Egyptian religious mystery plays also interested him and he showed the existence in ancient Egypt of a profane as well as sacred theatre, whose subjects like those of the Greeks were derived from mythology although not liturgical; painting of the Coptic period also fascinated him, as well as the 'Teaching of Amenemope' and its relationship with the Biblical book of Proverbs; on his return to France Drioton was made a member of the Conseil Artistique for Museums; he had an easy and fluent style which made his books and articles very readable; his bibliography up to 1955 numbered 287 items in all; his mongraphs included Introduction a l'étude des hiéroglyphes, with H. Sottas; with Marcelle Baud he produced two vols. on the Theban tombs, Le Tombeau de Roy, 1928, Le Tombeau de Panehesy, 1932; also Le Drame sacré dans I'antique Egypte, 1929; Une Scène des mystères D'horus, 1929; Ce que l'on sait du théâtre égyptien; Le Théâtre égyptien, 1942; Procédé acrophonique et principe consonantal, 1943-, An explanation of the enigmatical inscriptions on the Serapeum plaques of PtoLemy IV, 1946; L'Egypte, with j. Vandier, 1946; La Religion égyptienne, 1955; Maximes morales sur des scarabées égyptiens, 1957; Sur la sagesse d 'Aménémopé, 1957; Le Livre des proverbes et la sagesse d' Aménémopé, 1959; Egypte pharaonique, 1959; Boiseries coptes de style pharaonique, 1960; he died in Montgeron, 17 Jan. 1961 AFO 20 (1963), 308-9 (portr.)( J. Leclant); L'Ami du clergé, Langres 71 (1961), 295-6 (L. Christiani); BIFAO 61 (1962), 1-6 (portr.) (F. Daumas); BSAC 16 (1961-2), 335-7 (Sami Gabra), 337-42 (P. du Bourguet); BSFE 32 (Dec. 1961), 31-4( J. Sainte Fare Garnot); Bulletin de la Faculté des Lettres de Strasbourg, 40th year, no. 2 (Nov. 1961), 163-7 (portr.)( J. Leclant); Chron. D'Eg. 36 (1961), 175-8 (B. van de Walle) ibid. no 73 (1962), 5-7 (P. Gilbert); CRAIBL 1961, 24-5 (P. Chantraine), 106-7 (C. Schaeffer); La Croix, Paris, 27 Jan. 1961 (P. du Bourguet); Ecclesia, Paris, no. 145 (Apr. 1961), 123-30 (5 iilus.) (M. Colinon); Encielopedia Pomba, Turin, vol. ii (I 962), 353 (F. jesi);.Etudes, Paris, 94th year, vol. 309 (Apr. 1961), 73-84 (P. du Bourguet)); JEA 47 (1961). 4(J.Cerny); journal de Genève, 20jan. 1961, 2 (C. Maystre); Le Monde, Paris, I Feb. 1961 (no. 4988), 8 (G. Wiet); Nauvelles de l'Institut Catholique de Paris, 12, no. 3 (Feb-Mar. 1961), 17-22 (2 illus.) (P. du Bourguet); Rev. Arch. 1961, ii. 83-5 (J. Sainte Fare Garnot); ibid. 1962, i. 97 (Ch. Picard); La Revue du Gaire, vol. xlvi, no. 246 (Feb. 1961), 173-4 (A. Papadopoulo); Rev. d'ég- 13 (I 961), 9-18 (portr.)( J. Vandier); ;ZAS 87 (1962) pp. i-ii (portr.)( J. Vandier); BIFAO 56 (1957), 1-18 (bibl.)( J.Jacquiot); BSFE 116 (1989) 5-7 (J. Vercoutter).

Published Documents 3

Unpublished Documents 1

Photos 2